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17 February 2014 @ 05:19 pm

When I first encountered Scrivener I thought, “Wow, this is a really great way to spend a huge amount of time doing work that isn’t writing.”

I still think it’s that, but I’m coming around to seeing how it’s also got the potential to be an incredibly useful tool. I’m working on a couple of projects where I need to be able to keep track of a lot of names and relationships, and my general method (methos) of doing that is by keeping document files with random information inserted into them, and naming them things like “Jo’s history” in which I also put, say, Morrison’s background, thus making it very difficult to find Morrison’s background later.

Scrivener’s format lends itself to keeping those kinds of notes in a file at the side of the page, allowing them to all be available at a click. Same with the synopsis; it’s in the same file, so it’s just a matter of switching over to it (though I’m so used to alt-tab to look at different pages I keep alt-tabbing myself out of Scrivener). All by itself those things are incredibly helpful (except the alt-tab problem), and there’s obviously a great deal more functionality that I don’t know how to use yet.

I clearly need a Matrix-style “I know kung fu” download, although there’s apparently an excellent Scrivener how-to by Gwen Hernandez, who *also* knows kung fu, so that’s almost the same thing. :)

Anyway, I started the one project for which Scrivener was obviously suited in it, but am slightly surprised to find myself setting a second proposal up in it too. Apparently I’m becoming a convert. Probably not enough of one to move the longer works in progress into it, but possibly enough to move MAGIC & MANNERS in so I can keep track of names…

(x-posted from The Essential Kit)

Chrysoulachrysoula on February 17th, 2014 05:58 pm (UTC)
Scrivener junkie here... I think I may teach myself to use keywords soon. Each time I start using a new bit of functionality it feels like a whole new, better program...
Catherinesharpwords on February 17th, 2014 06:26 pm (UTC)
Another Scrivener junkie. What I love about it is that everyone I know seems to use it slightly differently.

I found out about full screen mode the other day & am very excited about it.
My favourite things otherwise are labels & the outliner view to easily see things like item type or even viewpoint characters.
Catherinesharpwords on February 17th, 2014 09:11 pm (UTC)
Oh, my ultimate favourite thing is being able to add notes to each scene so that I can see my revision notes within the same app while actually doing revisions...
And the snapshot functionality for saving drafts is really handy too.
And... OK, no, stopping there.
Michellemsagara on February 17th, 2014 08:24 pm (UTC)
I am the opposite of a Scrivener power user, but I use it.

I use it because I work in single chapter chunks, can export those separately, and can then compile at the end and send the whole book as one file. (I used to send DAW separate chapters.)

But - I’ve on occasion made use of some of its actual, promoted strengths in rewrites.

I think the ability to use it to work the way you’re accustomed to working, and then, bit by bit, expand when you think of something you’d want to do, is great. And generally, if you *can* think of something you want to do, Scrivener *can* do it.